Friday, September 30, 2011

Ants love Asters

Ants were crawling all over the Asters. I never did find out what was so special about the flowers....

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Orange Peel Fungus

The pumpkin color of this fungus attracted my attention during a recent hike at Indiana Dunes. This brightly colored fungus was spouting up all over the place and has the appropriate name of Orange Peel Fungus.  

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Forrest Path

A wonderland of treasures can be found along this path going into the Indiana Dunes. The path travels through the bog---a fairy land that exists no where else on earth.

It's a place to come and view the tiny wildflowers, hunt mushrooms coming through the soil, taste delicate wild blueberries, or spot tiny frogs hopping among the leaf litter. In the summer this path looks more like a tropical jungle than a typical Indiana landscape.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Mystery Solved

For years, as I've walked through the Indiana Dunes, I've wondered what type of creature would leave the wavy lines in the sand near the beach. The other day I came across this guy weaving its way through.

This millipede was beautiful; almost blue with all those tiny red legs and coordinating red antennae. It was built to travel the dunes too---racing over the sand as fast as I could snap its picture.  

Monday, September 26, 2011

Land and Sea

WATER is taught by thirst;
Land, by the oceans passed; 
Transport, by throe;
Peace, by its battles told;
Love, by memorial mould; 
Birds, by the snow
Emily Dickinson Time and Eternity Part 4

Indiana Dune's National Seashore under a late September sky. Have a great week.  

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Coffee Creek

Coffee Creek's banks are filled with the remnants of bright yellow wild sunflowers that fill the hungry bellies of the waves of migrating birds this time of year.

This morning a flock of Chickadees had descended to enjoy the bounty that the creek and park provide.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Keep an eye on that Sun

With today's equinox our days are soon to become shorter than our nights. The sun this morning rose directly in the east and will set  directly in the west; making it a difficult day to commute east at sunrise or west at sunset.

In my hemisphere, here in the north, the sun will soon begin to rise south of east and will move further south each day until the winter solstice. You don't need to take my word for it---verify this information yourself by marking the sunrise against a building or tree on the horizon or checking it out with a compass. Then watch each morning as it moves further south.

At the winter solstice the sun will stop its southward journey, sit in place at its furthest point for a couple of days, and then start its journey northward to the spring equinox.

Keep an eye on that sun....

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Succession of Wildflowers Coming to an end

Touch Me Nots dot the understory of the Indiana woods this morning; bright little flowers dangling in the darkness underneath leaf laden trees.

And joining the Touch Me Nots in their last hurrah of the season are tiny asters, the last flowers of the year that started out with Jack in the Pulpits and May Apples as spring progressed to summer and now into fall.

It's a cycle of time that is easy to miss in this world where our attention is attracted to other things; the parade of the wildflowers.


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Already Changing

Fall doesn't arrive until Friday but don't tell this tree overlooking a field of gold that it's not here yet.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Hayrides to Come

An old tractor sits next to the barn at Sunset Hill Farm County Park.

Surely, there are a few more hayrides left in those wheels.

Monday, September 19, 2011

September Sky

Here's a cotton candy sky for your Monday morning. Let's have a wonderful week!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Late Summer Sunflowers

Late summer is the time of the asters; both wild and the garden variety. Here is a wild version of a sunflower finding the rising sun with its face.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Following the Footsteps at Forest Edge

I HAD withdrawn in forest, and my song
Was swallowed up in leaves that blew alway;
And to the forest edge you came one day
(This was my dream) and looked and pondered long,
But did not enter, though the wish was strong:       
You shook your pensive head as who should say,
‘I dare not—too far in his footsteps stray—
He must seek me would he undo the wrong.

Not far, but near, I stood and saw it all
Behind low boughs the trees let down outside;        
And the sweet pang it cost me not to call
And tell you that I saw does still abide.
But ’tis not true that thus I dwelt aloof,
For the wood wakes, and you are here for proof.
A Dream Pang from a Boy's Will by Robert Frost 

Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Deep Blue Great Lobelia

In the shade of the swampy areas at Coffee Creek the blue of Great Lobelia is providing late summer color.

This wildflower is the blue cousin of the Cardinal Flower, a red wildflower also currently in bloom.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Late Summer Bouquet

Goldenrod and Obedient Plant make up a summer into autumn bouquet at Coffee Creek Park.

The last of the bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds buzz through the flower filled fields in a frantic effort before the first freeze takes it all.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Passing Through

Resting on a zinnia in the garden, this butterfly came to me. It was plainly worn out, but after a time, it gathered some nourishment and continued on its way. Hopefully it will reach its destination.

Monday, September 12, 2011


Bane of allergy sufferers, yet representing good luck to others, weed in America, treasured garden plant in Europe, Goldenrod is loved and hated the world over.

The harbinger of fall, Goldenrod is coloring the landscape of Indiana gold today, as the nights turn chilly and the harvest is reaped of the fields.

Saturday, September 10, 2011


A delicate member of the pea family grows wild next to the Kankakee River.

Friday, September 9, 2011

American Ginseng

Bright red berries of American Ginseng light up the shade of forest. This plant has leaves in clusters of 5 and is considered an aphrodisiac by some.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Late Summer Reflections

Late summer is reflected in a bayou of the Kankakee River. This area is full of small fish and wildlife.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Buckeye's not Choosy

Some butterflies are pretty particular about host plants. Buckeye Butterflies are not that choosy, which may be the reason that, despite the wickedly wild and hot weather we've had this year, there seems to be a record number of these butterflies.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Remember the Jobless on Labor Day

There are many families who can't afford to have a burger on the grill this Labor Day. Over 15 million in this country are unemployed and have been for a long time. So before you go out to that holiday celebration show your support by tweeting, liking, or donating to these sites or post one of your own. 


And make sure your congressman or woman knows where you stand on the issue of jobs. It's hard to celebrate Labor Day when so many are suffering the degradation of unemployment.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Last of Summer

The last of summer is blooming at the Sunset Hill Farm County Park. Here a sunflower planted in the community garden faces the early morning sunrise with a fiery face.  

Friday, September 2, 2011

Grasshopper Crop

Indiana farmers are experiencing a bumper crop year---great news in these times.

Indiana is also experiencing a great crop of grasshoppers. This one showed up in my garden missing an antenna.    

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Fields of Gold

Stretching all the way to the horizon and pointing the way to autumn an Indiana field of golden flowers provides food and habitat for all kinds of creatures including wild turkeys.